Breaking Changes for Active Analytics

Ciprian on Thursday, November 10, 2022 in WordPress

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If you are looking for a WordPress analytics plugin, look no further. Active Analytics is a lightweight plugin which stores all pageviews and builds beautiful charts and visualizations.

Recently, I have reconsidered some stored values and decided to change how I display data, in order to show more meaningful information.

Active Analytics is now included in our annual plugin bundle.

Active Analytics

Table of Contents

User Agent vs Device

The first breaking change – and when I say “breaking”, I mean a change in how pageviews are stored, the plugin will still work as before – is the user agent. It’s getting increasingly hard to capture correct user agents, provided there is no header caching plugin installed on the website. Also, user agents are too many to generate meaningful charts and statistics.

So I scrapped the browser detection library and started using client detection. Some interesting JavaScript APIs are emerging, and they will provide 100% accurate information. If the API is not available in the browser, then I use some simple client-side user agent matching to extract the device type.

IP Addresses

An IP chart has been removed, as it offered no actionable insights. Coupled with privacy issues, there are no IP charts in the plugin any more. Note, they are still used in order to count unique visitors vs repeat pageviews.

Top Pages & Top Posts

Two new tables have been added to the Engagement screen, Top Pages and Top Posts. These are, simply, the most visited pages and posts based on an all-time page view counter. The post meta key is customizable, so you can migrate your own implementation or your current plugin.

Improvements

Other improvements include even faster performance, as all legacy tracking methods (HTTP headers, document head or document footer) have been replaced with an AJAX tracker, with no external dependencies.

Active Analytics is now included in our annual plugin bundle.

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